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Sigrid (Norway) – The Hype (single)

We rarely showcase ‘name’ artists these days; they don’t need it anyway and our primary mission is to bring to your attention those that are bubbling just below the surface.

But it’s useful occasionally to check on the progress of an artist that you have covered during their formative years and see how far they have come.

I’ve seen Sigrid a couple of times, in Manchester and at the Reeperbahn Festival, the last time in 2019, and my initial impression of her was of artist who had a couple of absolute bangers for early singles, especially ‘Strangers’, but not a great deal else in her locker.

She was the BBC’s ‘Sound of 2018’ and got massive exposure here but I wondered how much of it actually was ‘hype.’

Then along came her debut album ‘Sucker Punch’ in 2019 and I concluded:

“This is top class writing and…Sigrid will win many new friends.

In titling the album ‘Sucker Punch’ Sigrid hit the nail on the head. You might think you know her from the singles and their style is evident throughout. But she packs a surprising, unexpected uppercut of her own in the form of compositions that you couldn’t see coming.”

I haven’t kept particular track of her since, part of the reason being that she isn’t on the BBC every five minutes these days, they’ve long since moved on to new pastures. I know she released her second album, ‘How to let go’, last year and I believe ‘The Hype’ will feature on her third album.

Frustration and insecurity play a large part in her writing and the ‘hype’ in this case is what she imagined a previous partner’s feelings for her amounted to:

“Was I not the girl you signed up for?” she pleads, that line and others like “…you only call me when I’ve done something extraordinary” suggesting that the partner’s attention was conditional on aspects of her behaviour.

I could argue that there’s also at least a hint of submission and domination in lines like “’Cause you held me, held me like a trophy” and there’s an interesting little twist in a Facebook post where she is filmed cutting up some garlic with a sharp knife while commenting “the guy is the garlic.”

But that’s not really Sigrid is it? I can’t imagine her reciting a version of Story of O(slo) here anymore than I could picture Kylie doing it. And in any case she’s from Ålesund.

So, quite sharp lyrics that leave little to the imagination but it is musically where Sigrid really excels.

She always finds a tune. Not necessarily in the whole song but there is never a chorus without a memorable hook, one that her fans don’t have to memorise for her live shows. This one is centred on “Did you ever love me?” which, it goes without saying, will resonate with just about all her young fans.

While she keeps turning these bangers out her popularity is unlikely to wane but despite there being little in the way of experimentation or variation from her standard single fare here it’s worth remembering she can write much more profound stuff too, as she proved on the albums.

And it always helps when you retain your youthful bloom. She’s 26 now but you could imagine her dancing around the school playground in this video.

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